Barons acquire Graham, rights to Gayle

The Fort McMurray Oil Barons have acquired the rights to 1992-born forward Danny Gayle (Calgary, AB) from the Lloydminster Bobcats.

Gayle scored 39 points with the Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League last season.

In exchange, the Barons sent forward Jessey Touchette (Fort McMurray, AB) to Lloydminster.

The Barons also acquired 1993-born defenceman Taylor Graham (Calgary, AB) from the Whitecourt Wolverines.

Graham played 55 AJHL games last year for the Calgary Canucks and St. Albert Steel.

“He's a big, strong defenceman that can really skate,” says head coach and general manager Gord Thibodeau. “He's a kid that we felt could add something right now, especially with the injuries that we have; he'll add a bit more mobility.”

To make room for Graham, the MOB sent 1993-born defenceman Leighton McLachlan (Edmonton, AB) to the Drumheller Dragons for future considerations.

“We just felt that Leighton needed a fresh start,” Thibodeau says. “He's been a great footsoldier for us, and played very well in numerous roles.”

The coach describes the trade as less of an upgrade in defence and more as a shift in type of player.

“We wanted a bit more puck moving ability,” he says. “It's a difference in the style of game we want to play.”

The coach says he hopes to have Graham in the lineup for Wednesday night's home game against the Bonnyville Pontiacs.

Puck drop is at 7:30.